Affordable Care Act
If you read the news (or work at eHealth.com) you may be shocked to hear that one-in-five Americans has no idea where or how to apply for health coverage.
Even more shocking is the fact that, a year after the launch of Healthcare.gov (and 18 years after the launch of eHealth.com), the number of people who don’t know where to obtain health coverage has increased.
A Transamerica Center for Health Studies report found that the percentage of people who don’t know how to get health insurance has increased by ten percentage points since July 2014 – just 9% in July 2014, compared to 19% in November 2014.
However, if you look at this map from the Heritage Foundation, or read their report about the availability of health plans available on the government exchanges, your level of shock may dissipate a little.
According to the Heritage report, in 33% of the counties nationwide consumers only have one or two insurance companies to pick from. Even in states like Texas that have a lot of insurance companies offering health plans on government exchanges like Healthcare.gov, there are 175 U.S. counties where only one insurance company has health plans for sale on the exchanges.
Where the Heritage report misses the mark is in its claim that consumers are stuck with the choices offered on exchange.
With or without a tax credit/subsidy, consumers do not have to shop on government exchanges. And, if they prefer not to apply for tax credits/subsidies then they have more options if they shop off of the exchange.
If you shop at eHealth.com you’ll have access to over 1,900 additional health plans – nationwide – than if you were to shop at Healthcare.gov, according an analysis published by eHealth on January 15, 2015 in a press release entitled, eHealth Offers Consumers 46% More Health Insurance Plans To Choose From Than Healthcare.gov.
The following represent the total number of plans available through Healthcare.gov compared to the total number of plans available through eHealth in each 33 states.
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